25 Apr 2019 Lvl. 2
State replied
Alert created on: 17 Apr 2019 n° 34/2019 United Kingdom

Proposals for Online Harms Regulation Risk Impacting Media Freedom

Source of threatState
CategoryOther acts having chilling effects on media freedom
Partner Index AEJ
Partner Index AEJ
Proposed new and wide-ranging legislation in the UK government’s “Online Harms White Paper” released on 8 April has raised concerns about media freedom. Proposed measures include a new legal duty of care to address a wide range of “harms” (not limited to illegal material or activities) with the possibility of large fines and potentially criminal liability for senior managers. Companies of all sizes, including social media companies, public discussion forums, non-profit organisations, file sharing sites and cloud hosting providers are included (for example, a blog and comments would be included). Media and campaigning organisations have raised concerns about the risks of direct and indirect interference with media freedom, such as prior restraint for comments sections and potential removal of "harmful" news stories online.
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